2016 FBS Coaching Carousel: Baylor hires Temple’s Matt Rhule as head coach

Today the 2016 FBS Coaching Carousel is in full spin. As of Dec. 6 there have been 16 job changes, seven of which have been filled.


Baylor BearsBaylor: Baylor hired Temple head coach Matt Rhule on Tuesday. Rhule led Temple for four seasons, building the Owls into a conference champion this season after defeating Navy in the American Athletic Conference championship game on Saturday. Rhule’s first season in Temple in 2013 saw the Owls go 2-10. This past season the Owls went 10-3 and won the East Division for the second straight year. His record at Temple was 28-23. This is an above-average hire for the Bears, who had talked to SMU’s Chad Morris, Cal’s Sonny Dykes and new Purdue coach Jeff Brohm, among others. Rhule is a coach that knows how to turn 2-star and 3-star talent into 4- and 5-star talent, and that will come in handy on the Brazos as the Bears are likely to have a less talented recruiting class in 2017 due to all the controversy around campus.

Temple: With Rhule’s departure from Temple Ed Foley, the Owls’ assistant head coach, will handle their bowl game duties. Temple’s head-coaching search begins immediately, and Rhule left the cupboard full for his replacement.

The rest of the jobs

Here’s the information that is out there on the remaining head-coaching openings.

Cincinnati BearcatsCincinnati: ESPN’s Brett McMurphy reported that Troy’s Neal Brown was considered a candidate. Cincinnati Enquirer reporter Tom Groeschen tweeted that Western Michigan’s P.J. Fleck and former Texas coach Charlie Strong are the top candidates. Cincinnati AD Mike Bohn told the Enquirer that he’s talked with “10-to-12” candidates or their representatives. There is no timetable for a replacement, but theoretically more serious interviews are next.

Florida Atlantic: A national search is underway.

Georgia State: GSU has reportedly spoken to Oklahoma State defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer (Scout.com’s Robert Allen) and Arizona State offensive coordinator Chip Lindsey (ESPN).

Houston: CBSSports.com reported that the Cougars spoke with Oklahoma offensive coordinator Lincoln Riley. Houston has also spoken to former LSU head coach Les Miles and Alabama offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin, as has been widely reported. These guys might be your finalists, and Riley’s mentorship of two Heisman finalists in Baker Mayfield and Dede Westbrook might tip the scales in his favor.

Nevada: We’re down to finalists in Reno. Along with the originally-reported interest in Eastern Washington head coach Beau Baldwin (ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg) and Vanderbilt offensive coordinator Andy Ludwig (FootballScoop.com), Fox Sports’ Bruce Feldman reported that the third finalist is Arizona State assistant coach Jay Norvell.

Oregon DucksOregon: Oregonlive.com has a great thread on the opening, compiling everything they’ve learned and that others have learned. Among the updates? Western Michigan’s P.J. Fleck did not get an interview (John Canzano of the Oregonian). The Ducks reportedly offered Matt Rhule the job (CBS Sports) but he turned them down. Canzano has also confirmed that Oregon has interviewed South Florida head coach Willie Taggart, former Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano and other Power 5 head coaches.

San Jose State: Sports Illustrated reported that former Fresno State head coach Pat Hill has had contact with the school. Two assistant coaches with ties to SJSU are also reportedly in the mix — current Colorado offensive line coach Klayton Adams and current Oklahoma State running backs coach Marcus Arroyo (both reports were compiled by coachingsearch.com, but original sources were not listed).

Western Kentucky: It’s too early to talk interviews, as the job has been open just 24 hours. But the Bowling Green Daily News reported that athletic director Todd Stewart has a short list at the ready. The Daily News verified that two WKU assistants, Nick Holt and Tony Levine, are candidates. Levine was formerly the head coach at Houston.


Baylor Jim Grobe (acting) Matt Rhule
Cincinnati Tommy Tuberville TBA
Florida Atlantic Charlie Partridge TBA
Florida International Ron Turner Butch Davis
Fresno State Tim DeRuyter Jeff Tedford
Georgia State Trent Miles TBA
Houston Tom Herman TBA
Indiana Kevin Wilson Tom Allen
LSU Les Miles Ed Orgeron
Nevada Brian Polian TBA
Oregon Mark Helfrich TBA
Purdue Darrell Hazell Jeff Brohm
San Jose State Ron Caragher TBA
Temple Matt Rhule Ed Foley (interim)
Texas Charlie Strong Tom Herman
Western Kentucky Jeff Brohm TBA

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